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International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS): “Understanding complex plant traits using computational and evolutionary approaches”

10 fully funded PhD student positions in the Plant Sciences


The International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) on Understanding Complex Plant Traits using Computational and Evolutionary Approaches is a local collaboration between the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (MPIPZ) and the Universities in Cologne and Düsseldorf (Germany). The IMPRS has been established in 2002 and offers an international PhD programme in English. Students are closely supervised through an advisory committee, receive professional training in transferable and applicable skills and are supported to share their scientific insights.


More than 30 groups work on a wide variety of topics from Computational Biology, Plant Genetics, Structural Biology, Plant Immunity, Developmental Biology, Natural Variation, Chromosome Biology and related fields. Our common goal is to understand the molecular basis of complex traits that differ between plant species and confer novel phenotypic characteristics. Projects are detailed here.


You are a highly qualified and motivated student from any nationality with a Master’s degree in a related subject. You have a proved track record of academic and research excellence and are fluent in written and spoken English. Applicants still studying should anticipate receiving their degree not later than 5 months after the interview date in late April 2020.


We provide an excellent, international and interdisciplinary research environment with state-of-the-art facilities and a renowned faculty. Positions are fully funded for 3 years with possible extension. We are committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in the workforce and encourage applications from such qualified individuals. Further, we seek to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented and therefore explicitly encourage women to apply.


  • Apply by February 2nd 2020 at at gradschool.mpipz.mpg.de.
  • Only applications submitted through the online platform will be considered
  • Shortlisted applicants will be invited for interviews on April 21-24th 2020
  • Selected applicants will start preferably on October 1st 2020


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